The Difficulty of Sleeping a Complete Night in Norway

To be totally honest, this is not a purely Norwegian Problem, but one found across most of Scandinavia. Unfortunately, the disease appears to be spreading through the rest of the world. It is related to the way beds are made in Scandinavia. Instead of having a civilised arrangement of sheets and blankets with the usual 10 minute tussle to try and get your feet into a freshly made bed without breaking your toes, the Scandinavians have invented the ‘doona’ (dyne på norsk). This wonderful invention means that it takes about 10 seconds to make a bed in the morning. The disadvantage is that it prevents you sleeping a complete night as it is necessary to retrieve the dyne about a dozen times a night from the floor next to the bed.

The other delightful thing about the dyne is that it has been specially designed to be about 10 centimetres too short for whatever body happens to be trying to sleep under it. Either your feet freeze or your shoulders do. I suspect that the big Viking types learned to sleep curled up in a ball (which, judging from the winter temperatures in Norway, is not such a bad idea anyway).

The really disturbing thing about all this is that when you go to the countryside with a group of Norwegians and stay in their cabin (hytte) in the winter, the outside temerature can be around -20 degrees celsius. After starting the fire and warming the cabin up to a temperature that allows your fingers and toes to do their jobs properly, what do the Norwegians do? They open the bloody window in the bedrooms to cool them down (to -20 or so) so they can get a good nights sleep. This is really when you notice the shortcomings of the dyne. Thomo’s advice on this matter is that when invited to the mountains in the winter and where you will be sleeping overnight in a cabin, lay out an area of floor immediately around the fire as your sleeping spot for the night. The aches and pains from sleeping on the floor are more than offset by the fact that you do not freeze your short ones off at night. Thomo’s other advice is to remember that Thomo’s definition of roughing it is a three star hotel.

6 thoughts on “The Difficulty of Sleeping a Complete Night in Norway

  1. Snebjørn 30 November 1999 / 8:00 am

    I’ve just returned from a prolonged weekend in London (inadequate anglo-saxon bed-style country) with my wife and son, and we spent quite a bit of time wondering if anyone in England ever gets any sleep at all.

    The Scandinavian style will conquer the world, it’s the o­nly true way of making your bed!

    If you find the dyne too short, curl up and enjoy the body warmth of your bed companion*.


    * No bed companion? Try the viking life-style….


  2. Derek 7 July 2018 / 10:14 pm

    Are dynes at all like duvets?


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